Snow storm strands airline passengers

Posted at: 12/26/2012 11:58 PM
By: Dan Levy

COLONIE - The season's first major snow fall has left holiday travelers, and much of the nation's airline industry, in a holding pattern.

It's not the end of the world for people who can't make it home, or who can't make it to their holiday destination, however snow storms do have a tendency to create frequent flier frustration.

Mary Watanabe and her family from Southern California flew cross country for the Christmas holiday, intent on seeing Niagara Falls. Instead, with the whereabouts of much of their luggage unknown, they wound up stuck in the Albany Airport cafeteria on Wednesday night.

"We thought we'd bring the kids here for different scenery and we're stuck in an airport," Mary said, finding humor in the situation by chuckling, her husband, son and daughter at her side.

On a snowy night in the Capital Region, Albany Airport becomes sort of a holding block for hard luck travelers as delays and cancelations light up the arrival and departure board.

Yes, there was a Christmas for Virginia resident Brenda Price, the problem though was that Wednesday night she couldn't make it home to Virginia.

"My daughter has a home in Loon Lake and she's nice enough to come back and get us but the earliest we can get out is Sunday morning," Price said. "We get to enjoy the snow."

It's a passenger predicament shared by many frequent fliers, including Tony Crucetti and his wife, from Wynantskill, who is one his way (hopefully) to California to see the Rose Bowl. His wife can't wait to see the Rose Bowl Parade. And both of them have their hearts set on seeing cable cars and Fishermen's Wharf in San Francisco.

"It's a once-in-a-lifetime thing," Crucetti says, "It was on my Bucket List and I kicked it over and it rolled out.